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Monday, April 16, 2012

Making Your Own Music-Multiple Albums

Making Your Own Music-Multiple Albums
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     When making your own music most controlled composition clauses don't distinguish between normal albums and multiple albums. If you don't raise the issue, you'll have a ten-song mechanical limit on multiple albums that can have twenty or more songs. If you ask, you may get more that a "ten times" limit, but it won't be "twenty times": The companies will only increase the mechanical royalties in the same proportion that the wholesale price increases over that of a single-disc album. For example, if a single disc is $10, and a double album is $11, you would get 11/10, or 110% the ratio that $11 for the double album bears to $10 for the single of the mechanical royalties payable for a single album. This formula is very similar to the one used for your artist royalties on the multiple albums. If there is no price increase, you won't get any more mechanicals in your contract, but you can often work it out when you start to record the multiple album. This can be serious business if you have a lot of outside songs, because the outsiders will insist on getting paid and it comes out of you. For example, if there are sixteen songs and six are outsiders, all six are excess of the allowed ten and would be deducted from mechanicals leaving only four songs worth of mechanicals for your ten songs. If you pay the outsiders full statutory, while your limit is ten times 75% of statutory, you're even further in the hole! So, if you have an attack of multiple-albums-itis, negotiate the mechanicals with your record company, and ideally with the outsiders as well, before you start. Box-set mechanicals are specifically negotiated when the package is put together.

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